Business owners are always looking toward two benefits:
- Reducing costs
- Increasing efficiency
Interestingly enough is the fact that the push toward SaaS, location-independent services, and integrated Web/hardware tends to be the solution for the majority of businesses (if they’re willing to make the transition); especially those that are in their initial stage of setting up.
The purpose is to replace traditional systems and platforms that may be tied to hardware at a physical location so that it may be readily accessible through flexible means. In part, by switching to online platforms and location-independent services for everyday business operation services (such as payroll, documentation, sales, customer relationship building, logistics, and more) you naturally decrease the learning curve along with empowering employees (which leads to reducing costs and increasing proficiency due to the flexible nature of the resources).
What generally holds a business back from truly tapping into being location-independent are:
- Office-based workstations
Logistics is an area that is surprisingly flexible in the recent decade largely due in part to a combination of services such as using a PO box online, dropshipping, and online postage options.
As of Catalyst For Business owner could, theoretically, make sure of an online PO box service to still present a physical location, monitor shipments, and consolidate shipments/re-shipping from any location. Alternatively, warehouse distribution centers are becoming common (such as Amazon) to move product without ever having it coming to the physical location of the business. Coupled with the occasional shipments that may need to be in-house with online postage options and logistics becomes very hands-off.
Office-based workstations are the other crux in keeping a business flexible and location-independent because it ties employees to a particular location and time zone.
A business will typically have a core set of individuals for its operation from the accountant to IT professional. They are in office because they are tied to their workstations when in reality it can easily be done through secured, online means.
There are many compelling reasons to allow employees to work from home.
Not only can most (if not all) of the computer programs employees use can be transitioned toward SaaS services but there are the added benefits of less commute for the individuals, fewer resources needed to cover the daily energy costs, and tax benefits if these employees are independent contractors.
Obviously those that physically interact with the product (such as in manufacturing or logistics) may need to stay on board but as we’ve seen – even logistics can take a back seat – and if you work with manufacturers of products which can integrate with fulfillment companies then there isn’t much need for a physical office except for, perhaps, the branding.
Imagine what could be done at your operations if you were to make the transition from traditional systems to those that are flexible and agile readily found on the Web or had even launched with these in mind from the very beginning! Imagine the costs which could be reduced through the vast selection of solutions along with the proficiency that builds off these platforms as employees integrate them into their day-to-day operations.
Perhaps this is the year that your business makes the leap to location-independence.